GRADUCon 2019 - Careers in Non-governmental Organizations Panel


Are you interested in building a career that is focused on the public good? Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) work to promote social or political change on the local, domestic, and/or international level, independent of governments. This panel introduces you to four domestic and international NGOs, to some of the common positions available in NGOs, and provides insight into how to build a career in NGOs.


Cosmos Godson, Sub-Awards Manager, Heartland Alliance International (MA Social Sciences 2018)

Cosmos Godson is the Subaward Manager at Heartland Alliance International (HAI), involving an annual budget of 25 million dollars, which is linked to the entire operational portfolio of the Organization. Cosmos has held mid- and senior-level administrative positions on international developmental projects culminating in 9 years of cumulative experience in the operational administration of several development programs. Cosmos has managed several developmental interventions including projects funded by USAID, UNICEF, US Department of State, European Union, Global Fund, and Global Affairs Canada. Cosmos is passionate about alleviating the plight of the world’s most underprivileged and impoverished communities, while using empirical and evidence based policy making to drive change in the developing world.

Amy Schumacher, Senior Program Associate, Feeding America (MA Social Service Administration 2014)

Amy Schumacher is a Senior Programs Associate at Feeding America, the network of 200 food banks across the US. Her work focuses on supporting the network to increase access to nutritious meals for all communities and populations, with a focus on children and families. Amy received an AM in Social Service Administration focused on nonprofit management from the University of Chicago. She received her BA in Psychology from the College of William and Mary and started her nonprofit career as an AmeriCorps volunteer in Chicago. Amy worked in the AfterCare department of a residential treatment facility for youth who experienced trauma. Amy is passionate about exploring the intersection of hunger and poverty, trauma, and other challenges faced by those the Feeding America network serves and is interested in learning more about how connections with nonprofit and other community partners can improve the work already being done in the network.

Juliana Pino, Policy Director, Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (AB 2008, MS Environmental Policy and Planning & MPP Public Policy Analysis, University of Michigan 2015)

Juliana Pino is the Policy Director at the Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (LVEJO). At LVEJO, Juliana analyzes, researches, and advocates for environmental justice in local, state, and federal policy. LVEJO campaigns cross many areas of environmental policy, including energy systems, food systems, water quality, air quality, brownfields, toxics, land use, transportation, and others. Her work focuses on: advancing energy democracy and community self-determination in regulatory and policy arenas; creating just transition with meaningful collaborative and participatory management of shared environmental resources; and centering frontline community leaders as generators of transformative policy ideas and governance models. Additionally, Juliana is committed to facilitating and cultivating processes that promote social justice and public health, has experience in multi-party negotiation and mediation, and works to build robust decision-making frameworks that center the perspectives of those most affected by both broader structural oppression and the specific policies being deliberated.In 2017, Juliana was recognized in Midwest Energy News 40 Under 40 for her work in the transition to a clean energy economy as lead negotiator for low-income programs in the 2016 Future Energy Jobs Act. In 2018, she was named one of Grist’s 50 Fixers for her work in making the world a more just and sustainable place for all. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Environmental Council. Prior to joining LVEJO, Juliana has contributed to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Great Lakes Commission, and the U.S.-China Chamber of Commerce, among others.

Sara Goldberg, Director of Development- Humanity & Inclusion, Handicap International (MA Social Sciences 2001)

Sara Donhowe Goldberg is the U.S. director of private fundraising for Humanity & Inclusion, an award-winning international NGO working in nearly 60 countries. She received a B.A. from Luther College and a Master’s Degree in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago. For nearly 20 years she has held professional roles in various aspects of non-profit fundraising, communications, marketing, and internal communications. Sara resides in Washington, DC area with her husband, whom she met at U of C, their three children, and a dog named Portia.


Chaevia Clendinen, Assistant Dean for Student Advancement & Diversity, UChicago Social Sciences Division (PhD Molecular Biology Princeton University 2015)